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Historical Dictionary of Iraq

Éditeur : Scarecrow Date & Lieu : 2004, Oxford
Préface : Jon Woronoff Pages : 536
Traduction : ISBN : 0-8108-4330-7
Langue : AnglaisFormat : 130x210 mm
Code FIKP : 2888Thème : Histoire

Table des Matières Introduction Identité PDF
Historical Dictionary of Iraq

Historical Dictionary of Iraq

Historical Dictionaries of Asia, Oceania, and the Middle East, No. 44

Over the past decade or so, and especially since the Gulf War, there has been a tendency for the focus on Iraq to get narrower and narrower. Indeed, many foreign politicians, aided and abetted by the media, seem to equate it to one man: Saddam Husayn. Although he might not mind this, Iraq is infinitely larger and more varied. In fact, it is a fairly big country, with a substantial population coming from diverse origins and holding diverse views, whether or not they could be expressed openly. Indeed, more than might be expected, opposition does exist. And hidden dissension, not blind obedience, seems to have the longer tradition just as discord frequently overshadowed any cohesion. Now that a new, and hopefully happier, era has begun, it is time to look back on the past, with its countless twists and turns, to fathom how Iraq will evolve in the future.

The focus of this historical dictionary of Iraq is broad—impressively so. It reaches all the way back to the earliest civilizations and refers to the many, often less glorious periods that followed. It presents those who created empires and regimes, and those who overthrew or sought to undo them. It sheds lights on many social, religious, cultural, and economic groups and the institutions that were forged to hold them together, albeit not always effectively. And it culminates with the fall of the Ba’th regime.

This broad view is obviously more helpful than the old narrow focus. It is reflected through numerous dictionary entries on persons, places and events, organizations and institutions, and economic, social, and religious phenomena. The chronology, vital in this case, traces one of the world’s longest histories. The bibliography permits even broader reading.

This impressively broad presentation of Iraq was written by Edmund Ghareeb and Beth Dougherty, who collaborated closely with him. As a journalist, Dr. Ghareeb followed and wrote on events in the Middle East, including Iraq.

Since 1982, as an academic, he has been lecturing and writing on the same topics, with an emphasis on Kurdish studies. He has taught at the American University, where he is at present, along with Georgetown University and others.

Beth Dougherty is a professor of international relations at Beloit College, where she also specializes in Middle East affairs. Together they have formed an inimitable team who have produced this unique and very long-awaited Historical Dictionary of Iraq.

Jon Woronoff
Series Editor


The general purpose of this dictionary is to cover a number of diverse subjects ranging from the history of ancient Mesopotamia to the ‘Abbasid Empire to present-day Iraq . It includes a historical overview, a country profile, the economy, oil, fauna, political institution, the Iran–‘Iraq war, the Kuwait invasion, and the second Gulf War and other conflicts. It also covers the major ethnic groups such as the Kurds, the Turkumans and the Assyrians, Islam and Muslim sects, Christianity and Christian sects, as well as other religious groups. The dictionary highlights the main political, religious, and ideological parties, groups, and organizations; major historical personalities; languages; literature; culture; a comprehensive bibliography; and other topics. We have also dealt with a broad range of topics both ancient and modern.

Since the standard way of transliterating Arabic requires acute and grave accents and other diacritical marks that are not generally used by most Western writers and media, we have tried for simplicity’s sake to avoid them. For the three Arabic vowels a, i, and u that are not usually written when they are short, we have used these letters. We also tended to write Muslim instead of Moslem, Tariq instead of Tarik, and Husayn instead of Hussein. The Arabic letter ‘Ayn is represented by an ‘ in words such as ‘Abbas or Ba’th but is omitted from names or words that are regularly used without it in the West or by the persons themselves. The hamza, a glottal stop, has generally been omitted. We have also tried to write words and letters in accordance with the standard Arabic pronunciation, such as the letter q instead of k for the letter qaf—for example, Baqir, not Baker or Bakir. The letters gh is used for the letter ghayn in Baghdad instead of Bagdad.

We would like to express our thanks to a number of colleagues, friends, and students far too numerous to mention each by name who have provided us with information or who typed part of the work. We are also grateful for the information provided by a number of Iraqi public and private figures, Arabs, Kurds, Assyrians, and Chaldeans as well as others. A special word of thanks goes to Jon Woronoff for his thoughtful comments, suggestions, and, more important,his patience.

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